C40 Chair, Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes and China's Premier Li Keqiang just held a landmark meeting on topics including the advancement of climate action in Chinese cities. In November 2014, President Xi signaled China’s commitment to finding solutions to climate change when he announced the nation’s targets to peak CO2 emissions around 2030 or earlier and to increase to 20 percent the share of its energy from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030 – a goal that cities can help to reach.
Stepping up engagement in China has been a strategic pillar of Mayor Paes’ tenure as C40 Chair.
To reflect China’s size and leadership in the global population, economy and ambition to de-couple economic growth from greenhouse gas emissions, Mayor Paes’ discussed with the Prime Minister how C40 could expand Chinese city membership and to establish a regional office in Beijing.
“Cities are crucial partners to nations in setting and meeting ambitious climate targets on the Road to Paris and beyond; nowhere is this more true than in China, where the number and size of megacities is rapidly growing,” said Mayor Paes. “We would welcome the support of Prime Minister Li in engaging more Chinese cities in the C40 global network. By collaborating and sharing experiences, cities can go further, faster, creating liveable cities for urban citizens today, and a sustainable future for generations to come.”
Chinese cities have expertise in low carbon development that can be shared with other C40 cities; for example, the extensive proliferation of electric buses in Chinese cities is a world-leading practice that C40 intends to help cities replicate globally.
Premier Li’s official visit was part of a three-day tour to strengthen the bilateral collaboration with Brazil, per invitation of President Dilma, and included a visit in Rio, which next year hosts South America's first-ever Olympic Games.